Friday, March 1, 2013

NASHVILLE SNOW
We have flurries! Forecasters say this little bit of snow we're getting may get heavy enough to give us an inch of accumulation by tomorrow morning. Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) crews have already been out putting the salt-brine mix on the roads to keep them from icing up.

WASHINGTON BUDGET CUT TALKS THIS MORNING
President Obama and Congressional leaders meet at the White House this morning to talk about budgets. The sequester goes into effect today, which means by midnight, the President is required to either have a budget cutting deal or order federal agencies to implement the budget cuts.

EX-POPE RELAXES AS CARDINALS PREPARE TO VOTE
Pope Benedict the 16th is officially retired. The College of Cardinals meets today to start the process of choosing a new  Pope.   
 
SINKHOLE SWALLOWS FLORIDA MAN
Imagine this:you're asleep at the house, and suddenly a SINKHOLE opens up and swallows a family member! That just happened in Florida! A huge sinkhole opened up under a bedroom, and swallowed a guy, as his brother frantically tried to save him.  Emergency crews were unable to even contact the man who'd fallen in, because the sinkhole kept growing and the house became unsafe. Engineers will go back to the house today and try to get a better idea of what's going on. They think the sinkhole could be 50 feet deep.

METRO SCHOOLS TO BECOME COMMUNITY HUBS
When families do well, the children are more successful. That's the thought behind new Metro 'community schools' that will help address the needs of students AND their families. The 17 schools in the "Community Achieves" program will offer adult education, health clinics, job counseling, and sports and community events.A major part of the initiative would be aimed at getting parents more involved.
The YMCA, Martha O'Brian Center and the Metro Health Department were just some of the agencies that will provide programs.

PROPOSAL TO INCREASE FINE FOR SEAT BELT VIOLATIONS
How many times do you see it in a day: somebody driving down the road, that seat belt flapping in the window next to them, or hear about people who had a minor crash, but died because they weren't buckled up? One Tennessee lawmaker thinks we could save more lives with a higher fine for not obeying the seat belt law. Representative Tony Shipley of Kingsport wants to increase the fine from 10 dollars to 50 bucks for a first offense, 75 dollars for a second time you're caught not wearing it.

TODAY IS "NATIONAL DAY OF UNPLUGGING"
Today is being called "National Day of Unplugging." It's aimed at those who Instagram their breakfast, as well as those who just want time to connect with friends the old-fashioned, in-person way.

WHY WOMEN'S WAISTS ARE 6 INCHES BIGGER THAN THEY USED TO BE
British researchers think they've figured out why women's waists are 6 inches bigger than 60 years ago: they say we're spending less time doing housework, and more time planted at our desks these days. In 1950 the average woman's waistline was 28 inches, today it's 34. We used to burn 1,000 calories a day just cleaning house. (Now, in addition to doing less housework, we eat 300 more calories a day.)

LAWSUITS OVER NASHVILLE FLOOD DISMISSED
A federal judge has ruled that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Weather service can not be sued for negligence over the 2010 Nashville flood. The judge said the organizations are immune from prosecution under the Flood Control Act of 1928, and dismissed three lawsuits that were pending against them.

TEEN HIDES IN LOCKER TO CATCH THIEF, GETS SHOCKING VIDEO
A California high school student was shocked at what she found when she caught a thief on camera. The person who'd been stealing from kids backpacks while they were in gym class, is allegedly the gym teacher. Justine Betti hid in a locker and got it on her cellphone video. The teenager says she agonized over it before she reported it, because the gym teacher is very popular and well-liked. She finally did report it, and the school district says it's investigating.

MODERN FAMILY BEATS IDOL IN RATINGS FIRST TIME EVER
As American Idol ratings go down, and Modern Family ratings go up, there's a new Wednesday night champ. For the first time ever ABC's "Modern Family" drew a better Wednesday rating than Fox's "American Idol." That was Idol's lowest-rated performance since season one.

TEXAS PARAMEDICS TO BE ARMED?
Hey, Pardner, is that a gun in your pocket? Why yes, little lady, it is. The Homeland Security Committee in Texas is considering legislation that would require by law that paramedics in smaller counties (those with populations of 50,000 or fewer) carry handguns.

TITANS' BRANDON BARDEN FACING DUI CHARGES
A Tennessee Titan is facing DUI charges in Georgia.  Police say Brandon Barden flipped his car Saturday morning after losing control and hitting a ditch drain. Barden refused a field sobriety test, though officers noticed a "strong odor of alcohol."

MORE SHUTTLE WORKERS BEING LAID OFF
More workers jobs are over at United Space Alliance.. the company that took care of the space shuttle fleet. They're just not needed now that the space ships have been retired.

HOW TO WATCH FALCON ROCKET LAUNCH ONLINE TODAY
There is a rocket launch set for today: the Falcon 9 is taking supplies and equipment to the astronauts living in orbit aboard the International Space Station.  The private spaceflight company SpaceX is counting down to the launch, and has two official websites you can choose from to watch it happen. 

HORSE MEAT PLANT LIKELY TO BE APPROVED
Guess what might be available for dinner soon? Horse meat. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is expected to approve a horse slaughtering plant in Roswell, New Mexico, which would be the first time since 2007 that it's been legal to produce it here in the U.S. 

KATHY BATES JOINS AMERICAN HORROR STORY
It has been announced that Kathy Bates will be joining the cast of American Horror Story for the upcoming third season. The actress is set to play the old-friend/nemesis to Jessica Lang’s character, and in a recent interview with TVLine, creator/executive-producer Ryan Murphy revealed that the actress will out-evil any role she has previously played with this one

NEW VIRAL HIT, GALLON SMASHING, MAY BE ILLEGAL
Even though it's been very popular online, the new viral hit called "Gallon Smashing" is getting teenagers in trouble. Three boys film themselves carrying milk containers in supermarkets, then throw one at the floor, acting as if they'd dropped it, and flailing around in the spilled milk. They had millions of hits for the video, but then cops pointed out that maliciously damaging property is a crime, and the videos are evidence. The video suddenly went away. Now, however, ten kids in Utah have been arrested for copycatting the "gallon smashing" stunt.

NEW FEES IN EFFECT FOR AIRPORT SHUTTLE COMPANIES
If you use the shuttle to get to and from the Nashville airport, you could be paying more soon. The airport is raising its fees for off-site parking companies, from 1.75 a trip to 6.50. The president of Fly Away shuttle service says he thinks the Airport Authority is trying to put the shuttle companies out of business so fliers have to park at the airport.

GIRLS GONE WILD GONE BANKRUPT
The company behind the racy "Girls Gone Wild" videos is laying bare its financial situation.  It's filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection listing 16-million-dollars in debts.  Founder Joe Francis owes millions to casino mogul Steve Wynn who sued and won a defamation judgment against him.